Derek Chauvin’s attorney files motion for new trial

Derek Chauvin. File Photo courtesy Ramsey County Sheriff's Office

May 5 (UPI) — Lawyers for former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin filed a motion for a new trial Tuesday after he was convicted on murder charges last month in the killing of George Floyd.

Chauvin’s attorney, Eric Nelson, filed a request alleging that the ability for the former officer to have a fair trial was affected by publicity before the proceedings in the high-profile case.

The motion said the court “abused its discretion” by denying requests by the defense to change the venue and move for a new trial, adding that it also failed to sequester the jury or “admonish them to avoid all media,” leaving them open to prejudicial publicity as well as “jury intimidation or potential fear of retribution.”

A jury found Chauvin guilty of second- and third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter after he was seen on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck for more than 9 minutes while attempting to arrest him for allegedly using a counterfeit $20 bill at a convenience store on May 25.

Nelson’s motion requested an order to “impeach the verdict” on the grounds that the jury “committed misconduct, felt threatened or intimidated, felt race-based pressure during the proceedings, and/or failed to adhere to instructions during deliberations.”

Chauvin is set to be sentenced on June 25 and faces up to 40 years in prison on the second-degree murder charge, up to 25 years on the third-degree murder charge and up to 10 years on the manslaughter charge.

On Friday, the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office issued a court filing seeking a longer sentence for Chauvin.

The filing alleges Chauvin “inflicted gratuitous pain, and caused psychological distress to Mr. Floyd and to the bystanders” and that Floyd was “particularly vulnerable” at the time of his death.


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